Family dynamics can be tough to navigate, and I think that probably goes at least double for families that aren’t yours. Joining your partner’s family and attempting to figure out what’s going on there can be stressful to say the least.
For this woman, she was also stepping lightly around a cultural divide, but since her husband and his mother were already estranged, it took some of the pressure off.
This is a weird situation, but I was married to my husband for six years before i met MIL. MIL is from a culture where respecting your elders is everything, and the DIL has to pretty much grovel to make her MIL happy. My husband knew upfront that I wasn’t going to play into that. Him and his mom already had a bad relationship, and he told her that I was not going to partaking, so she went fully no contact. He still sees his dad and sister about once a year, but MIL and his older brother dont see him ad never met me.
He does still talk to his father and his sister-in-law, and everyone, to some degree, thinks the mother-in-law is being dramatic.
MIL has three children, BIL is married to a woman from their culture who is scared shitless of MIL, and MIL has some fun with that and takes out her anger towards her own MIL on poor SIL. SIL is her golden child, but does find this a little ridiculous and stay in contact with my husband.
When they visited the father-in-law and OP went to lunch with him and her sister-in-law, lo and behold they ran into the mother-in -law.
She wasn’t at all what OP expected, and since her father-in-law introduced her as the sister-in-law’s friend, OP kept quiet about her true identity for the duration of lunch.
Anyway we visited FIL over the summer. He doesn’t mention anything to MIL because she says my husband is dead to her, and he respects that. My husband gets migraines and wasn’t feeling well, so laid down at the hotel, and FIL took me and SIL to lunch. Halfway through some woman came over and it took me a minute to realize it was MIL.
She looks super young, like way too young to be my husband’s mom, so I genuinely didn’t put it together at first. Also all i knew of this woman was that she was so old school she would cut her son off over respect, so I didn’t expect her to be wearing shorts and a tank top.
They had an awkward lunch, and when her mother-in-law learned the truth later, she was quite upset.
Her husband, too, thinks she should have said something and given his mom the chance to leave if she wanted to.
By the time I realized who she was, her and her friend had already invited themselves to join us. FIL said that I was SIL’s friend and gave me a death stare, so I just went along with it. She was very very nice, though lunch was hella awkward. When we got back to the hotel I told my husband and he got mad.
He said I should have told her who I was, and that I let her win. I guess SIL told her when they got home, and MIL lost it and was screaming and throwing shit around. SIL also thinks i should have told her, but so she would have had the option to leave.
Listen, this may not have technically been the right thing to do, but her mother-in-law also sounds as if she deserves pretty much whatever she gets.
So there’s that.
Here’s what the commenters had to say when they weighed in!
Some people thought it was downright funny, and accused her husband of not having a sense of humor.
While others thought she should take it one step further and continue to remind MIL of the outing.
The consensus, though, is that the mother-in-law only reaped what she had sown.
It was pointed out that if it was anyone’s responsibility to introduce her it was her new family’s, and that’s who her husband should be angry with after the fact.
Because yeah, that would have made things even more awkward for everyone involved.
I don’t think that OP was anywhere in the wrong, but I am sorry that she’s married into a family that has no trouble pulling her into their drama.
Drop your take on us down in the comments!